Review: Peugeot Traveller (2016)
Stylish and comfortable MPV, well-equipped as standard, will transport up to eight, efficient range of diesel engines.
Tourneo Custom is better to drive, not a lot of boot space when all of the seats are in place, third row can get quite noisy.
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Peugeot Traveller (2016): At A Glance
The Peugeot Traveller is stylish and upmarket MPV that rivals the Ford Tourneo Custom and Volkswagen Caravelle. Like other large people carriers, the Traveller is based on a van – in this case, the Peugeot Expert – and is aimed at taxi operators, airport shuttle firms and family buyers who need utilitarian transport for the school run.
The Traveller will carry up to seven passengers and majors on value. Indeed, it costs considerably less to buy new than its Ford and Volkswagen rivals and running costs are smaller too, with Peugeot's efficient range of four-cylinder turbodiesels returning 133g/km of CO2 and up to 55.4mpg, according to the official figures.
There are two trim levels to choose from - Active and Allure - and base models get all of the essentials, which means you shouldn't need to raid the options list to add any costly extras. Active models feature climate control, parking sensors, automatic headlights and a full size spare wheel. Twin side sliding doors are also standard, along with a split rear tailgate and air conditioning for the rear passengers.
Allure trim brings the Traveller in-line with the plush Mercedes-Benz V-Class, with full leather trim, hands free electric sliding side doors and a panoramic sunroof. There's also darkened privacy glass for the second two rows, while the 17-inch alloy wheels and body coloured bumpers provide the Traveller with an executive appearance that wouldn't look amiss in the carpark of any high street hotel.
Due to its wide and upright dimensions, the Traveller is extremely practical. Both the second and third rows are spacious and this means three tall adults can sit in the middle row in comfort. The third row also has lots of head and leg room, although sound proofing could be better as quite a lot of road noise makes it into the cabin.
The Traveller isn't as good to drive as the Tourneo Custom or Caravelle, with numb steering that makes it difficult to gauge any connection with the handling; however, the Traveller is easy to drive and surprisingly nimble when it comes to parking. The ride is composed too, which means long distance comfort is never an issue for the driver or passengers.
The diesel engines vary from 1.6 to 2.0-litre and power outputs range from 95PS to 180PS. The star performers are the 115PS 1.6-litre and 150PS 2.0-litre diesels. Not only are these engines packed with torque, but advertised economy is 51.4- 55.4mpg. This is almost 10mpg more than anything the most-efficient versions of the Caravelle or Transit Custom claim.
Despite a few shortcomings, the Traveller is an impressive MPV. It might not be as refined as its car-based rivals, but the low running costs and upmarket appearance will make it an appealing choice for taxi and shuttle operators who want a luxurious people mover that will look as good on the company books as it will on the road.
What does a Peugeot Traveller (2016) cost?
Peugeot Traveller (2016): What's It Like Inside?
The Peugeot Traveller is available with up to eight seats and is offered in three body lengths –compact, standard and long. As you’d expect, the largest provides the highest level of bootspace when all eight seats are in place.
The long version will provide 1060 litres, while the standard model has a useful 640 litres for carrying suitcases, although the upright shape of the boot means you'll need to stack bags on top of one another to make the most of the space. The compact model is the least practical for carrying suitcases, with just 280 litres on offer.
All versions get twin sliding side doors as standard, which makes access easy. The second row also folds down and forward, which makes it simple for passengers to access the rearmost two seats. The tailgate also has a split opening, which means you can load bags without having to lift the huge tailgate - handy for multi-story car parks or airport drop-off points, where space is usually limited.
As a people carrier, the Traveller is spacious, comfortable and well-equipped. It is a fully fledged eight-seater and the high roofline provides lots of headroom for tall adults. There is also plenty of legroom across both rows of seats.
All of the seats are comfortable and the second row features three Isofix anchor points, which means you can fit three child seats across. Allure models add leather seats and a panoramic glass roof, which adds to the pleasant and airy ambiance of the passenger space.
Things aren't too shabby in the front either, with a comfortable driver's seat and raised driving position that provides an excellent view of the road. Heated and electric door mirrors are standard too and everything is within easy reach, while a smart seven-inch colour touchscreen controls the DAB audio, Bluetooth and optional navigation.
As mentioned, the Traveller gets lots of equipment as standard; this means you don't have to pay extra for essentials, like cruise control or rear parking sensors. The Traveller also gets a full size spare wheel, along with automatic headlights and windscreen wipers.
What's the Peugeot Traveller (2016) like to drive?
Due to its van-origins, the Traveller is nowhere near as rewarding to drive as the Ford S-MAX or as high-tech as the Citroen C4 Grand Picasso. Even against its van-based rivals, the Peugeot feels a little below par in the handling stakes, with numb steering and disappointing gearbox options. But, in its favour, the Traveller is very easy to drive. It also has some of the lowest running costs of any large people carrier.
Almost all of the four-cylinder turbodiesels will officially exceed 50mpg and the economy-focussed 115PS 1.6-litre unit will return an advertised 55.4mpg, which is roughly 10mpg more than its rivals from Ford, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen will claim.
The all-diesel engine line-up starts with the 95PS 1.6-litre, but this unit - with 210Nm of torque - feels a little lethargic when fully laden. The 115PS 1.6 will not set the world alight in the pace stakes either, but it at least feels sufficient enough to cope with eight adults and a few bags in the back.
There are also two 2.0-litre diesels too, with 150PS or 180PS. The 150PS unit produces 370Nm of torque and is extremely good, with plenty of low-gear pull that makes it easy to trundle along in a high gear for most of the time. The 180PS engine develops 400Nm of torque and improves things further, with a six-speed automatic fitted as standard; however, unless you really want a swift-moving MPV or need to utilise its two-tonne towing ability, we'd opt for the 115PS or 150PS engine.
The least powerful diesels are matched to either a five-speed manual or automated manual. Neither is particularly pleasant to use, with slow and jerky gear changes that can make the Traveller a little awkward to drive at low speeds. The least powerful 2.0-litre engine is mated to a slick six-speed manual while the 180PS gets six-speed automatic gearbox. Both are excellent.
On the motorway the Traveller is calm and composed, although the longer versions are prone to catching crosswinds. Road and wind noises are generally low, however, things are a little noisy in the third row of seats.
The Traveller impresses in town though. It is offered in just one height - 1.9 metres - which means all versions will fit into a multi-story car park. The turning circle is also small for a vehicle of this size, which means parking or performing a three-point turn is easy.
What do owners think?
Our view gives your our opinion, based on driving hundreds of cars every year, but you can't beat the views of someone who lives with a car day-in, day out.
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